Film follows the drovers’ trail through Perthshire

THE stories behind Scotland’s ancient drove roads are being told in a new film, which has been made to promote, a guide to off-road cycling across Highland Perthshire.

In the video, round-the-world single-speed cyclist Markus Stitz retraces the route used by cattle drovers from the Cairngorms through the Tay Valley to Crieff, which became Scotland’s most important cattle market at the end of the 17th century.

His journey follows the “Drovers’ Trail”, a new 331 kilometre gravel bikepacking route spanning almost the whole of Highland Perthshire.

Drove roads inspired many of Scotland’s greatest writers, including Robert Burns and Sir Walter Scott.

Stitz said: “Designing the various routes made me aware of not only the rich history of Highland Perthshire and the Tay Valley, but also of the huge variety of landscapes that can be found across the area.

“I sought to use the story of the cattle drovers to draw parallels with the adventurous spirit of bikepacking nowadays, while showcasing the immense beauty of the area, not just for cyclists.

“I hope the new film and the route network will encourage more people to explore the area and will also give locals new ideas to experience their immediate surroundings.”

The project was led by Highland Perthshire Cycling – a charity set up to boost the use of bikes by locals and visitors – and delivered by Bikepacking Scotland.

Read more stories about Scotland’s landscapes on Scottish Field‘s outdoors pages.